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The Milkmaid

  • Photographer
    Ting Ting Chen

This photo is inspired by and pays tribute to Johannes Vermeer's painting Milkmaid (1658), a masterpiece of the Dutch Golden Age. I took this photo in the Colony of Avalon when Lori Pittman, the wonderful chef, was working in her 17th-century style kitchen. In history, Lady Sarah Kirke, North America's "first and foremost entrepreneur," owned and operated a dairy at the Colony of Avalon in the 1630 and the 1640s. The archaeologists have recovered many ceramic milk pans and butter pots in the Colony of Avalon, now known as Ferryland in Newfoundland.

I left my home in Asia and came to Newfoundland Canada three years ago as an international student. During the past three years, I have not only found my new home in Newfoundland, but also my muse. Newfoundland is the inspiration for my photography. Robert Tilley, a -73-year-old true and born Newfoundlander, is the first friend I made when I come to Newfoundland, and now he has become my best friend. Robert and I have traveled most parts of Newfoundland, and he appears in many of my photos as a model.